Thought for the end of the summer term...

Glancing over my shoulder at the past,
I realize the number of students I have taught
is enough to populate a small town.
I can see it nestled in a paper landscape,
chalk dust flurrying down in winter,
nights dark as a blackboard.
The population ages but never graduates.
On hot afternoons they sweat the final in the park
and when it's cold they shiver around stoves
reading disorganized essays out loud.
A bell rings on the hour and everybody zigzags
into the streets with their books.
In my first twenty years of teaching, as the poem says, I must have taught enough people to populate a small town... called King's Lynn...
This is a time of year when students leave to move onto the next stage of their lives, and many teachers start clearing their rooms as they are retiring, or moving to a new school.
Good luck to everyone leaving a school, or preparing to start a new one in September...